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Andrew Neil admits "rocky start" for GB News

Andrew Neil admits
Andrew Neil admits that his new news channel GB News had "a bit of a rocky start" and hails the station's loyal followers.

GB News chairman Andrew Neil has admitted that the channel got off to "a bit of a rocky start" but has hailed the service's encouraging early ratings figures.

The new station launched on June 13 with a lineup of discussion-led programmes rather than rolling news, as well as a commitment to reporting of local issues around the UK.

In its first fortnight GB News has been beset by technical problems but appears to have found a dedicated audience, even beating Sky News in the peaktime ratings during its first full week on air.

Talking at the end of his show tonight, Neil said: "Yes we had a bit of a rocky start with the launch of GB News - we're a start-up. They're always a bit rocky, these start-ups.

"But we are up and running as you can see. We get better every day and there's clearly an appetite for what we are doing.

"In under two short weeks, we've already built a loyal audience which has beaten all of our expectations. It's often bigger than the other news channels and it's growing.

"That's the real story about GB News to date - and you won't often read that in the papers.

"So on behalf of GB News, I say to all of our viewers: thank you. Thank you. Your support makes all of our hard work worthwhile. We won't let you down and you ain't seen nothing yet!"

GB News is available nationwide through all major TV providers and also plans to launch a live stream via YouTube in the coming weeks.

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Friday, July 23


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Saturday's key events


ROWING
· Two-time Olympic gold medallist and comeback queen Helen Glover teams up with Polly Swan in the heats of the women's pair (12.30am-4.30am)

ARTISTIC GYMNASTICS
· Two-time Rio gold medallist Max Whitlock leads Team GB's charge in the men's qualification, while Rhys McClenaghan flies the flag for Ireland (2am-2pm)

SHOOTING
· The first gold medal of the Games will be awarded in the Air Rifle women's final (from 2.45am)

CYCLING
· The men's road race should be a wide-open thriller, with Team GB among those going for gold (3am-10am)

TENNIS
· Andy Murray, Novak Djokovic and Naomi Osaka are among the names in action on the opening day of tennis (from 3am)

SWIMMING
· Adam Peaty and many others get their Olympics campaigns underway on the opening day of swimming (11am-12.50pm)

FOOTBALL
· Team GB's women try to make it two wins from two against hosts Japan (11.30am)
· Netherlands and Brazil, who scored 15 goals between them on matchday one, face off (12pm)
· World champions USA look to bounce back from a shock opening defeat against New Zealand (12.30pm)

> Today's schedule in full